Tuesday, October 27, 2020
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The Right’s George Costanza Problem

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As the sirens of the right go out in a howl of fury and defensiveness, it's becoming clear that the likes of Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly and Glenn Beck have a more self-destructive streak than that for which we've given them credit. In a weird way, it's starting to remind me of the nine-season saga of "Seinfeld"'s George Costanza.  

George, early in pretty much every episode, would get caught in some sort of lie, mistake, exaggeration, or otherwise embarrassing situation.  But that wasn't really the problem. The problem was that he would inevitably double down on his nonsense, invest in it as if it were a blue-chip stock, and carry it to the bitter end until it all blew up in his face.

We seem to be nearing the end of the movement about nothing that is the story of Palin and her ensemble cast. And like George - as usual - they are doubling down on their mistakes and thereby making them that much worse.  You can tell the episode is going to be over soon when the joke starts to be on them.

Yes, Sarah and company would be wise to duck their heads for a while, mutter some words of calm and condolence and talk peacefully about something else, anything really.  But no.  For these folks, now's the time to circle the wagons, escalate the attack, inflame the rhetoric to the "towering inferno" setting.